Living room lighting ideas – 28 ways to light your living space

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Getting your surviving country lighting ideas close is important to making your abstraction consciousness welcoming, relaxing and atmospheric from time into night. 

The champion lighting for surviving rooms tin beryllium utilized to item architectural features, supply melodramatic decorative effects, make illusions of abstraction and specify zones successful unfastened program areas. In fact, lighting is 1 of the astir versatile plan tools that tin beryllium utilized to heighten your surviving country – and tin bash truthful successful truthful galore ways. 

Our ideas and adept proposal connected lighting your surviving country volition assistance you to execute a palmy scheme. Put them to the apical of your living country ideas list, alongside everything from colour schemes to storage.

Living country lighting ideas 

We person covered surviving country lighting ideas that are much than conscionable astir looks – they besides encompass applicable solutions, on with a ton of proposal from apical lighting and plan experts.

1. Create intimacy with debased hanging lighting

A surviving  country   with bluish  and achromatic  brushed  furnishings, bluish  armchairs, greenish  sofa, and debased  hanging chandelier

(Image credit: Ian Baldwin)

Adding a debased hanging chandelier oregon pendant airy to a seating country volition assistance make a cozy consciousness of intimacy by lowering the ocular plane. In this example, a elemental six-branched airy fitting acts arsenic a centerpiece for a postulation of armchairs and a sofa. Crucially, fittings that bent astatine caput tallness oregon beneath should ever beryllium successful areas wherever you aren’t readying to locomotion oregon basal – spot them implicit a array to debar immoderate mishaps. 

2. Experiment with modern LED lighting styles 

A achromatic  surviving  country   with an LED lighting fitting shaped similar  a hoop

(Image credit: Davide Lovati)

Classic lighting structures similar candle chandeliers, shaded pendant lamps and fractional satellite partition sconces person stood the trial of time, but don’t beryllium acrophobic to clasp a brave caller world. LED exertion has made it imaginable for airy fittings to travel successful a wider array of designs, including this hoop statement fitted with an LED bar. The artfully tarnished reflector besides creates a ocular opposition to the fitting’s slick lines, and volition assistance bounce the airy astir the room. 

3. Consider the colour of the airy your fittings shed

Neutral colored surviving  country   with ample  ceiling airy  and array  lamp

(Image credit: Elicyon)

'It's important that you see the colour of the airy shed by your fittings, whether that beryllium the bulb colour oregon the airy diffused by the colour of the shade,' says H&G's Editor successful Chief Lucy Searle.

'In fact, if you are clever, you tin change the temper of a room, conscionable with a bulb oregon shadiness colour – here, successful this beauteous abstraction by Elicyon, the airy fixed disconnected by the array lamp volition beryllium muted and warm, cleanable for a surviving room.'

4. Make abstraction for task lighting successful a surviving room

A surviving  country   with bluish  walls, a matching desk, armchair and bookshelf

(Image credit: Future)

Now much than ever, our surviving rooms are having to multi-task, which means our lighting needs to, too. The newest summation to your surviving country lighting arsenal has to beryllium airy to enactment by. It needn't beryllium purely functional, adjacent a beauteous array lamp similar the 1 supra volition make a excavation of airy to enactment by.

5. Get textural with lampshades

A bluish  surviving  country   with reddish  armchairs, reddish  and achromatic  sofa and wicker lamp

(Image credit: Jon Day)

As good arsenic covering up unsightly bulbs and helping diffuse airy astir a room, lampshades are besides a accidental to inject other property into a plan scheme. As good arsenic reasoning astir colour and pattern, see texture too: successful this surviving room, a wicker lampshade adds different furniture of tactility to a fabric-centric scheme. As a reasonably coagulated shade, it volition support astir of the airy pointing downwards, but breaks successful the worldly volition let for a diffused glow above. 

6. Blend lighting and artwork with neon

A bluish  surviving  country   with a sputnik chandelier, neon motion   and fireplace

(Image credit: Brent Darby)

A airy fitting tin beryllium truthful overmuch much than a nighttime instrumentality – chosen with a spot of creativity, it tin treble arsenic a enactment of art. A cool, modern mode to bash this is to question retired neon pieces: lettering and enactment drawings successful agleam colors volition adhd property to a room, portion besides acting arsenic a glowing airy root for moody evenings. You tin adjacent spell each retired and committee a neon creator to make thing bespoke for you, featuring a favourite punctuation oregon adjacent your ain handwriting. 

7. Use lampshades to make decorative accents

Living country   with colorful lighting and furniture

(Image credit: Firmdale Hotels/Kit Kemp)

We are large lovers of signifier astatine H&G, truthful it's possibly unsurprising that we person picked retired adding signifier arsenic 1 of the bonuses that lighting tin bring to a room. Our advice? Use it arsenic an accidental to adhd a caller accent signifier successful a antithetic motif size to the others successful your country – and of course, instrumentality the accidental to adhd a caller color, too. 

8. Make a diagnostic of partition art

living country   with colorful connection    creation  and lamp

(Image credit: Kitesgrove)

A modern surviving country needs a precise layered attack to lighting, arsenic it has galore functions. ‘Downlighters should beryllium astir invisible, their airy picking retired creation connected the partition oregon shining straight down onto a cardinal console table,’ explains interior designer, Staffan Tollgård of Tollgård Design Group.  

A accepted representation airy tin enactment good supra a painting, but a directional LED downlight is simply a bully prime for modern artwork oregon if determination is insufficient country to acceptable a representation light.

9. Use a dimmer

living country   with connection    lighting and art

(Image credit: Kitesgrove)

Lighting creates temper and atmosphere, and it needs to beryllium versatile truthful that it works connected a dull time conscionable arsenic good arsenic it does for an evening party. 

'If you person a ample surviving country with 3 oregon much lighting circuits, it’s worthy considering a power strategy to debar the request for a large slope of dimmer switches,' advises Sally Storey, plan manager of John Cullen.

10. Think astir lighting arsenic a finishing touch

Blue sofa successful  a bluish  room

(Image credit: Matthew Williamson)

Matthew Williamson is renowned for a joyful, expressive benignant successful his interiors and homeware collections. Here helium shares insights connected surviving country lighting. 

‘I’ve ever been a maximalist, a person of ornamentation,’ helium says, ‘I privation to make things that marque others consciousness happy. I’ve ne'er been capable to get my caput astir minimalism oregon level color. When I commencement a country design, I ever to deliberation however I tin marque an bare abstraction springiness joyousness and rise a smile.

'Table lamps implicit a country successful the aforesaid mode that jewellery completes an outfit. They are comparatively affordable and truthful even, if you are moving to a budget, a fewer caller lamps are a fantastic mode to springiness a full country a beauteous lift.'

11. Light up a speechmaking spot

Library with bluish  bookcases successful  Victorian surviving  room

(Image credit: Future/ Mary Wadsworth)

Ambient oregon wide lighting is usually provided by array lamps, truthful marque definite you person capable powerfulness points, including immoderate successful the level if the country is large. A level lamp, ideally with an articulated caput that tin beryllium angled to nonstop light, is utile for reading, though a array lamp astatine conscionable the close tallness – truthful that airy is formed downwards towards your elbow level – volition bash too.

12. Create areas of interest

neutral solid  fronted dresser successful  beforehand   of decorative wallpaper with pops of bluish  alongside an Orkney chair

(Image credit: Future | Jon Day )

Even if you are looking for small surviving country lighting ideas, you needn't dial down connected choices. In fact, the much options, the much layered the country volition feel. Add uplighters successful corners to adhd play to modern schemes. They are often utilized to make pools of airy and shadow. You tin besides spot them down sculptures and astir furnishings for a theatrical effect. 

13. Go for grandeur with a chandelier

White surviving  country   with awesome  chandelier and pinkish  rug

(Image credit: Future / Davide Lovatti)

A chandelier oregon hanging airy volition adhd a decorative flourish to immoderate interior. A striking chandelier increases the airy levels successful the country and acts arsenic an elegant connection piece; see hanging it arsenic debased arsenic functionally possible.

14. Play with scale

Red lamp connected  array  down  sofa

(Image credit: Sims Hilditch)

The consciousness of standard is simply a cardinal rule for palmy interior plan – erstwhile reasoning astir how to program surviving country lighting, effort mixing it up. This striking mentation of a array lamp throws successful an unexpected alteration of scale, and injects wit into this space. It besides adds interaction and draws the oculus to the sofa it looms over.

Don’t shy distant from adding a ample portion to a country for fearfulness of it being overpowering; successful fact, a large-scale pendant, array oregon level lamp often makes a abstraction consciousness overmuch bigger. Playing with airy and shadows is simply a bully mode to make a ocular content of further space. 

In precise fewer instances does bigger mean better, but successful lighting that is rather often the case. 'When pondering the size of a decorative light, bigger is mostly amended – thing excessively tiny tends to look mean,' explains John Cullen Lighting's Luke Thomas.

15. Think astir shadiness size

Leopard Love shadiness  successful  blue/pink colourway from the Matthew Williamson postulation  for Pooky

(Image credit: Pooky)

When choosing a shadiness measurement the diameter cautiously and if successful uncertainty spell bigger. 

'A grander, broader shadiness volition person much presence, similar a wide-brimmed hat,' says interior decorator Matthew Williamson. 'I often squad contrasting colors for the basal and shade. A color wheel is utile to take colors that are nonstop opposites. I person a lamp with a dusky pinkish shadiness connected a plain greenish basal astatine home. Blue with orangish oregon rust besides looks fabulous.' 

16. Highlight zones

Living country   with sofa and java  array  successful  foreground, model   and lamps successful  background

(Image credit: Kit Kemp/Firmdale Hotels)

When planning surviving country lighting, see the antithetic zones and features you would similar to highlight. ‘Use accent lighting focused connected a prized possession oregon artwork supra the mantlepiece, portion array lamps dotted astir the country connected shelving and console tables diffuse airy crossed the space, ensuring a cozy effect,’ says co-founder of OKA, Lucinda Waterhouse.

17. Work with existing architectural features

Blue and achromatic  surviving  country   with aggregate  decorated lamp shades

(Image credit: MIND THE GAP)

A surviving country is simply a amusive abstraction successful which to make lighting scenes. According to interior decorator Rebecca Leivars, you should 'aim to plan a country that reflects the property’s existing architecture and earthy airy orientation’. 

Try incorporating level uplights to make absorbing shadows and item artwork, and downlights to formed gentle scallops of airy onto favourite pieces and to driblet pools of illumination onto tables.

18. Think successful 3 erstwhile it comes to lighting

Living country   successful  achromatic  with sofas, armchairs and lighting

(Image credit: Stefani Stein)

Try to incorporated 3 layers of lighting, including floor, partition and ceiling, which volition let you to make antithetic atmospheres astatine antithetic times of day. Combine them with localized lighting, specified arsenic decorative array lamps, which adhd warmth.

19. Have amusive connected the ceiling

Red country   with ceiling lampshade

(Image credit: Future/PaulMassey)

'I emotion to adhd a large melodramatic ceiling airy – I don’t deliberation I’ve ever done a country without one,' says interior decorator Matthew Williamson. 'You should ever bent a pendant airy little than you deliberation – that decidedly adds an other magnitude to the room.'

20. Add colour with the close lamps

green and achromatic  surviving  country   scheme

(Image credit: Future / Jan Baldwin / Katrin Cargill)

If you thin to err connected the broadside of caution erstwhile it comes to utilizing bold patterns successful living country colour schemes, lampshades and bases are a bully mode to experimentation with people and color. 

A elemental lamp basal tin beryllium transformed into a focal constituent with the summation of a patterned lampshade, but don’t let your chosen shadiness to vie with your base; an elaborate basal requires a much subdued lampshade.

21. Make definite to airy a seating area

dark grey surviving  country   with navy sofa and reddish  java  table

(Image credit: Future / Polly Wreford / Sally Denning)

Ensure that each seating country has its ain lighting. While a level lamp whitethorn beryllium champion placed by an armchair, a sofa amended suits array lamps astatine either end. Alternatively, see living country partition lighting ideas if you are abbreviated connected space.

22. Craft a cozy corner

Henriette von Stockhausen reflector  tips, surviving  country   designed by VSP Interiors

(Image credit: VSP Interiors)

Go for low-level lighting, with table, partition and representation lights. Use lights that are dimmable and with a precise lukewarm achromatic colour temperature. By this, we mean a yellowish alternatively than bluish undertone. A dimmer is the quickest and easiest mode of changing the atmosphere.

23. Think astir tech with a astute lighting system

Smart lamp with talker  connected  table

(Image credit: Ikea)

Smart lighting is growing, particularly controlled done an app. These astute systems let you to acceptable lighting scenes for the room. For instance, you could archer the app that you’re present moving successful the abstraction truthful request a brighter light, which tin past beryllium changed again aboriginal erstwhile you’re relaxing. This lamp, from Ikea, is simply a astute airy and speaker, successful one.

24. Dramatize a ample surviving room

Living country   with immense  cardinal  airy  and reddish  sofa

(Image credit: Future/Polly Wreford)

There’s an creation to choosing pendants that are the close size for a space, but if you’re successful uncertainty – and if you person gangly ceilings, similar this country – it pays to err connected the larger side. ‘Overscaling is simply a concealed instrumentality of the interior plan trade,’ says Philippa Thorp, manager of decorating steadfast Thorp Design. 

This achromatic ligament chandelier is expansive without feeling heavy, echoing some the proportions of the array beneath and the reflector connected the partition opposite. 

Filigree designs, specified arsenic this Ligne Roset parachute light, tin formed analyzable shadows astir the room, but if you privation to soften the effect, instrumentality different extremity from Thorp. ‘I archer each my clients to usage pearl bulbs successful bid to make a gentle glow,’ she says.

25. Add to the ambiance with partition sconces 

Wall sconces successful  a surviving  country   designed by Kitesgrove

(Image credit: Mary Wadsworth)

Traditional partition lighting fixtures that usually nonstop airy upwards, sconces person been utilized wrong interiors for centuries, but are becoming progressively fashionable with today's interior designers. While historically they would person held candles oregon lipid lamps, contiguous there's an array of bulb sconce lights with a fresh, modern instrumentality connected the accepted design.

'Layered lighting is cardinal to guarantee your country feels its champion each twelvemonth round, and partition sconces tin enactment arsenic a supplementary airy output to enactment alongside pendants to execute this. Many of our partition lighting is made for creating cozy corners retired of alcoves, archways and different architectural nooks. However, sconces are besides extraordinarily apt astatine creating pockets of subdued airy successful larger rooms for boosting the ambience wherever needed,' says Sheena Lawrence, co-founder astatine Jim Lawrence. 

When it comes to wherever to presumption sconce lighting, Lucy of LCT Home, has this advice: 'generally they are placed astatine conscionable supra oculus level, precocious capable that the airy tin scope the areas supra and beneath that you privation to illuminate, whilst besides being capable to adhd an aesthetically pleasing decoration to a country erstwhile they are not on.'

26. Take a cue from the architecture

Open program  surviving  country  with chromatic  flooring

(Image credit: Paul Massey)

A magnificent treble tallness surviving abstraction is the perfect abstraction to showcase a connection pendant airy and thing commands attraction similar a show-stopping chandelier. While they whitethorn beryllium associated with accepted look, they tin marque a striking connection erstwhile fitted successful a modern abstraction arsenic this beauteous strategy proves. 

'Placing an interesting, connection airy successful the centre of the ceiling provides a large focal constituent and plan involvement successful the room, particularly if you are keeping a muted palette successful the space. Go for thing mid-sized oregon spell for an oversized chandelier if you person a ample surviving country with precocious ceilings to marque a existent statement. Afterall, lighting should look beauteous whether switched connected oregon off,' says Shalini Misra, Interior Designer and Founder, Shalini Misra Ltd and The Design Buzz.

27. Add signifier with array lamps


(Image credit: Penny Morrison)

If you are looking to make a traditional surviving room you can't spell incorrect with array lamps and according to Penny Morrison you tin ne'er person excessively many. Perfect for creating a cosy temper and casual to reposition passim the room, they are besides a large mode to adhd a popular of colour and pattern.

'I ever airy rooms with lamps only, but wherever determination are precise acheronian corners wherever I volition enactment tiny down lights successful the corners of the country connected dimmer switches which tin beryllium utilized to mildly heighten the illusion of daylight connected a truly acheronian day,' says interior decorator Penny Morrison. 

'When the country is ample and determination are a batch of lamps (a ample drafting country tin person up to 12 lamps) it makes a immense quality if you usage mildly patterned cloth shades truthful arsenic not to spot a oversea of achromatic oregon pick connected entering the room.'

28. Use partition lights to item artwork

wall lighting successful  a surviving  room

(Image credit: Kitesgrove / Mark Bolton Photography)

Wall lighting is simply a superb mode to adhd ambiance successful a surviving country but tin besides beryllium utilized to item wall decor and artowrk, too. alternatively than opt for accepted over-head representation lights, wherefore not adhd an eye-catching plan that serves arsenic a portion of partition creation successful its ain right? 'This airy highlights the creation successful a modern mode alternatively than utilizing accepted representation lighting, and its sculptural silhouette adds a modern touch,’ says says Clara Ewart, caput of plan astatine Kitesgrove.

What is the champion benignant of lighting for a surviving room?

Living rooms thin to beryllium 1 of the astir sociable rooms successful the home, utilized for relaxing, entertaining, watching TV oregon reading, truthful lighting needs to beryllium flexible, with each effect controlled separately to alteration the mood.

Currently, the astir fashionable modern lights are really re-workings of accepted fittings. One of the apical selling airy bulbs implicit the past twelvemonth has been the squirrel cage lamp. The filament successful the bulb gives a brushed lukewarm glow and it is designed to beryllium seen directly. The lights tin either beryllium suspended from the ceiling arsenic bare bulbs successful clusters, oregon utilized with spun alloy pendants for an concern look.

Recent advances successful exertion person provided respective caller lighting opportunities, and successful turn, broadened our horizons erstwhile it comes to fittings. A azygous pendant airy tin adhd wow factor, arsenic tin a clump of etched solid bulbs hanging astatine antithetic lengths. In different areas, discreet lighting creates a coolly modern interaction – tiny 1-watt uplighters, for example, volition adhd play to elements you’d similar to highlight.

Try to harvester ambient, task and accent lighting alternatively of relying connected conscionable 1 benignant of airy successful a room, which tin effect successful a level effect. Instead, enactment representation lights, support lighting, lamps and downlights connected antithetic dimmable circuits to make a layered effect with plentifulness of flexibility and control.

Bear successful caput that classical rooms often payment from being offset by precise modern fittings, portion modern schemes are often enhanced by accepted oregon retro-style lighting. Try to debar grids of downlights, arsenic their beams tin beryllium excessively harsh, and don’t neglect darker areas. Lighting corners tin often assistance maximise a consciousness of space.

How should I airy my surviving room?

'Aim for a premix of accepted and modern styles wrong a home. In a play drafting country with decorative cornicing, for example, wherefore not see a precise modern chandelier, alternatively than a classical option,' advises Luke Thomas of John Cullen Lighting. 'Discreet, low-glare, architectural benignant lighting tin enactment good with astir schemes, arsenic it volition subtly heighten your chosen style.'

To marque a bold statement, either usage a truly decorative airy fitting which is simply a diagnostic successful its ain right, oregon opt for overmuch much discreet lighting to item an architectural feature. 

Another casual mode to make play and adhd much airy is to usage recessed uplights to skim airy implicit a textured wall, the jambs of a fireplace oregon adjacent columns.

Where should lamps beryllium placed successful a surviving room?

Lamps should ideally beryllium placed adjacent furnishings to make a cohesive surviving country lighting scheme. Avoid conscionable placing lamps astir a room’s perimeter, which leaves a acheronian spread successful the center. The cardinal to a good lit surviving country is to present aggregate layers that integrate some ambient, decorative and task lighting seamlessly.

Layers of airy are the astir effectual mode to illuminate a country that is apt to beryllium utilized for antithetic purposes, including entertaining, relaxing, speechmaking a publication oregon watching television. This tin beryllium achieved by combining decorative partition and array lamps with architectural lighting, truthful that you tin power betwixt them arsenic required.

Every fitting is different, truthful moving retired precisely wherever to presumption a airy should beryllium considered connected an idiosyncratic basis. However, arsenic a wide rule, partition lights are champion positioned astir caput height, portion pendants hanging implicit a java array tin beryllium lower. But instrumentality attraction that they bash not origin obstruction. Opt for those that let accommodation to the driblet magnitude from the ceiling.